Food

7 New Outdoor Bars Around DC to Drink in the Gorgeous Weather

You won't want to miss these new rooftops, gardens, and patios.

The terrace at 12 Stories, the Wharf's newest rooftop bar. Photograph by Anna Meyer

12 Stories
75 District Sq., SW
The latest sky-high addition to The Wharf’s bountiful outdoor drinking scene is this chic cocktail bar atop the the InterContinetal Hotel. You won’t find a ton of outdoor space in the 170-seat lounge from NYC’s Gerber Group, but wraparound windows with gorgeous views and tasty cocktails more than make up for it. Al fresco weekend brunch also just started if you’re into avocado toast and a cold brew martini.

Best new outdoor bars beer gardens DC
Dacha opens its 800-person waterfront beer garden in Navy Yard. Photograph courtesy of Dacha.

Dacha Navy Yard Beer Garden
79 Potomac Ave., SE
Dacha just opened a swanky new restaurant and lounge near Nationals Park, and now they’re getting back to their beer garden roots with a huge al fresco bar. The 800-person biergarten, located steps from the eatery, is lined with imported linden and maple trees and boasts waterfront views. You won’t find drafts, but a big list of packaged brews will satisfy beer nerds, including Dachnik, DC Brau’s special can of Helles-style lager exclusively for Dacha. Look for a beer garden food menu to launch soon.

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The swanky rooftop lounge atop the Conrad. Photograph courtesy of the Conrad.

Summit the Rooftop at Conrad
950 New York Ave., NW
Yes, the name sounds like it was pulled from Everest, but you won’t need oxygen tanks to summit the 11th story rooftop at CityCenterDC’s swanky new Conrad hotel. Both the drinks and food take a global approach, so sip an absinthe Parisian Party cocktail alongside glazed short rib tacos and avocado fries. Note the bar opens Monday, May 20.

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Cork Wine Bar’s patio was designed by Salt & Sundry’s owner. Photograph courtesy of Cork Wine Bar.

Cork Wine Bar Patio
1805 14th St., NW
Veteran Cork is no stranger to the 14th Street scene, but the wine bar just launched a pretty patio for the first time designed by Salt & Sundry and Little Leaf neighbor Amanda McClements. If you’re thinking chilled rose and avocado-pistachio toast, you read our minds.

Best new outdoor bars beer gardens rooftop bars DC
Sit high above Logan Circle and sister bar Player’s Club at Skybox. Photograph courtesy of Skybox.

Skybox
1400 14th St., NW
Player’s Club, Logan Circle’s retro subterranean game den, now has a sister rooftop bar. Board an elevator in the former to get to the latter, which boasts 3,000 square-feet of indoor/outdoor space. Settle in at long picnic tables or lounge seating for creative drinks like a pineapple and chili-spiked batida (a milky Brazilian cocktail). Hungry? Good news: Shake Shack is just downstairs.

El Sapo debuts a mojito garden. Photograph courtesy of El Sapo.

El Sapo Mojito Garden
8455 Fenton St., Silver Spring
Silver Spring’s vivacious Cuban spot is getting even livelier with the opening of an outdoor mojito garden. Order the minty rum drink by the glass or pitcher, or ask the tenders at the indoor/outdoor bar to crack a fresh young coconut. We love the street food sampler loaded with Cuban sandwiches, empanadas, and other treats for groups. Live music keeps the good vibes going.

Lao in Town’s indoor bar opens up to the outside in nice weather. Photograph courtesy of Lao in Town.

Laos in Town bar
250 K St., NE
Bangkok natives Nick Ongsangkoon (co-owner of Soi 38) and chef Ben Tiatasin (formerly of Thip Khao) are behind this airy Lao restaurant in NoMa. Patrons can sit at the indoor/outdoor marble bar for pineapple-tamarind mules, or head to a patio table for dinner.

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Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.